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Crawley vs Stoke: Premier League class will show at Broadfield Stadium

| 18.02.2012

Crawley Town welcome Stoke to Broadfield Stadium on Sunday, hoping to capitalise on their opposition’s fixture pile-up by winning at odds of 13/5.

The League Two side have performed well in their first season since being promoted from the Conference, though patchy recent form has seen them slip to fifth place in the league, and Stoke may be a wounded animal in the aftermath of European defeat.

Therefore, an away win looks an unmissable bet at 21/20, especially considering that Stoke have disposed of two lower league sides away from home in their progression to this stage of the FA Cup.

En route to the fifth round for Crawley, they in contrast have beaten sides in leagues above them, and though Bristol City and Hull of the Championship are a completely different proposition to Europa League outfit Stoke, some punters may fancy Steve Evans’ men to earn a replay at 23/10.

Half markets look a good way to turn a profit by betting on this game, and Stoke to be leading at both half-time and full-time is the favourite passage of play here at 2/1, whilst the 7/2 for a draw at half-time, and full-time away win is appealing.

Stoke to win with more than three goals to be scored in the match looks a tremendous bet at 9/4, and some brave punters may take up the lengthy 8/1 for Stoke to score four or more goals in the match.

With Premier League and European competition to juggle along with FA Cup commitments, Tony Pulis is likely to rotate a big squad, and some fringe players should get the chance to impress.

Bearing that in mind, Ricardo Fuller looks a great punt for first goalscorer at 11/2, whilst Stoke’s potency from set-pieces makes centre half Matthew Upson look too big at 25/1 to notch first or last in the game.



John Klee